Flora and Fowl: An Eighteenth Century Antependium from France

Today I wanted to briefly share an eighteenth century antependium which recently caught my attention. The antependium in question is located in France -- though it is certainly possible that it was produced elsewhere. What particularly drew my attention to this particular antependium are the vibrant oranges, yellows and reds and, beyond this, the interesting inclusion of several birds in its design -- specifically two peacocks (an early Christian symbol of the resurrection) along with six other birds in addition. 

Here is a better look at the birds included in the design:

Of course, the use of birds in liturgical art is by no means novel. Aside from the paleochristian use of the peacock, some of our readers may recall a chasuble which we shared which belonged to the first bishop of Cincinnati which included finches in its design.  In another instance we have shared their use also within church decoration more generally.  

In general this antependium is wonderfully 'festal" in form and colour and follows very much in the tradition of floriated festal vestments.  

Regrettably I can give you little more information than this, but I hope you will enjoy the details shown here and hope that it might provide you with some inspiration.

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